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Dr. Zito's Lab

Recent Research and Thesis Projects

France-Lyz Honoré, Independent Study (2014) Silencing of oncogenes in HPV negative cervical cancer cell lines by methylation. 

This project seeks to measure tumorigenesis in 2 HPV negative cervical cancer cell lines following the silencing of some oncogenes. This may provide valuable information on the pathways of the oncogenes, and how silencing oncogenes could lead to better cancer therapy.


Sandy in lab

Sandy Durosier, Independent Study and Thesis (2014) Title of Project: Do the Secreted Factors from MDA-MB-231 and Sk-Br-3 Breast Cancer Cells Induce Cancer-related Cachexia during Muscle Cell Differentiation?

 Description of Project: The progression of malignant tumors in the body involves communication between the secreted proteins from the cancer neoplasm and its microenvironment. This cellular signaling crosstalk leads to the loss of muscle mass, or cachexia in advanced stage cancer patients. Cancer-related cachexia affects almost 80% of cancer patients and account for about 30% of all cancer deaths. Nonetheless, a comprehensive understanding of the effects of cancerous cells on muscle cells is lacking. Furthermore, the complexity of cachexia makes it difficult to treat. In my thesis research project, I investigate whether secreted factors present in breast cancer conditioned media from MDA-MB-231 and SK-Br-3 cell lines affect the differentiation and survival of C2C12 murine muscle cells. 

Ying at the hood

Ying Han, Research Project (2014)

Heather Pascual, Independent Study and Thesis (2013 - 2014) The Potential Role of Hypermethylation in EGFR Activation and Localization to Act as a Target for Therapeutic Drugs in Cervical Cancer.

Summary:  EGFR signaling is important in a subset of cervical squamous cell carcinomas and therefore anti-EGFR therapy may be beneficial. However, as found in colon and breast cancer, hypermethylation may play a role in reducing the effectiveness in these therapies. Studying EGFR localization in squamous cervical cancer cells and investigating characteristics of EGFR hypermethylationmay enhance the knowledge necessary to determine the potential for EGFR as a suitable target.


Bharath Krishnan Nair Sreekumar, Independent Study and Thesis (2013)

A portion of the work was presented as Bharath Krishnan Nair Sreekumar and Christina I. Zito, Effect of secreted factors from C2C12 myoblast cells on the Her2 negative breast cancer cell line MDA-MB-231.University of New Haven Graduate Student Showcase, November 2013.